© Alterrapower
© Alterrapower

Companies collaborate to develop hydrokinetic turbines

DesignPro ltd and GKinetic Energy Ltd in Ireland are collaborating to develop a new range of run-of-river hydrokinetic turbines.

GKinetic previously engaged DesignPro to build prototypes of its technology. During this phase, DesignPro secured the opportunity to develop 25-kW and 60-kW devices. DesignPro applied for Horizon 2020 SME instrument and has now secured Horizon 2020 Phase 2 funding to commercialise river turbines up to 100 kW using GKinetic’s technology.

Date to be collected during the research and development aspects of the project include information needed to enable scaling up the devices to utility-sized machines and relevant data for environmental impact purposes.

The GKinetic concept involves two vertical-axis turbines placed on either side of a buoyant vessel. The shape of the vessel increases the speed of water into the turbines. The combination of accelerated flow and a patent blade pitch control system results in higher power outputs. The device can be deployed in arrays in rivers, oceans or estuaries.

With a total investment of €2.7m, this work will create up to 15 jobs during the project development stage and 50 jobs after commercial rollout.